Christmas is coming, the geese are getting fat, get started on your festive marketing… and all that
Thats right, the end of Financial Year has come and gone, winter is officially over. Although the thoughts of warmer weather and time with family may seem a long way off, now is the perfect time to start thinking about getting things together for the busy Christmas season.
It never fails to surprise us just how quickly things can snowball (excuse the pun) out of control during the lead-up to Christmas and just how urgent things suddenly become. A little pre-emptive planning now and things can run much more smoothly come December.
Here are a few tips for things that can be done now, or in the coming weeks to help your business get prepared for Christmas… and don’t forget we are more than happy to talk about how we can help your business plan and develop a solid strategy for all of your communication needs.
August/September is the perfect time to start putting your plans into place for the silly season, start to gather ideas from your staff about what promotions and events you think will work for your business. Brainstorming now will give you plenty of time to ensure that you can do some research to find out what ideas are feasible and what may not work.
Don’t forget to start breaking things down into bitesize, manageable pieces that are not as daunting to keep you motivated right through to the Christmas break. Identify early what you wish to achieve and plan how you can achieve your goals.
Define your language, tone and the visual look
Christmas for most people, whether religious or not is generally a happy time of the year, it’s a celebration of family, friends and good times where values such as giving, sharing and charity are well valued. Coupled with New Years the mood is generally up-beat and far less corporate than other times of the year. Make sure your marketing plan speaks to your target audience in the right way.
This can be achieved through carefully worded ads and content as well as well crafted images and designs. Start planning a theme for this up-coming year and cater your marketing materials around that central theme. Now is a good time to start planning and thinking about your design and visual appearance as it becomes an essential part of the overall message and good design can become the visual unifier for your campaign.
Plan Social Media Posts
Although a good portion of Social Media posts can be topical and relate to what is going on at the time it’s still a good idea to ensure that you have a solid block of posts ready to go out at scheduled times to compliment the topical posts. Opening up or printing out a calendar now and planing a good chunk of posts for the Christmas period now or in the next month will give you a good idea about how much work will need to be done internally and externally to ensure you get everything completed on-time. Ideally you don’t want to be brainstorming ideas for Social Media posts in late November / December, instead you should be focused on helping your customers and clients.
Plan to have at least one post per week scheduled and automated to be posted by the end of October for November and December.
The Festive Season is not just Chritmas
Some people can have such a one-track-mind when it comes to Christmas they forget some of the other days around the same time of year. You should think about promotions, events and Social media posts for these days as well!
Australian Labour Day Holiday – October 3rd
Halloween – October 31st
Melbourne Cup – November 1st
Black Friday – November 25th
Cyber Monday – November 28th
Boxing Day – December 26th
New Years Eve/Day – December 31st/January 1st
Website Major Changes
Ensure that you plan to have any large-scale or more risky website development projects completed before mid-October to allow you enough time for extensive testing and risk management. That means that they will need to begin at around the beginning-mid September, which really isn’t very far away! Put together a wish list for any features you think you want/need for your website before the busy Christmas period and speak to us to plan the project for you.
eMail List Building
This quarter is the time to really be building your email marketing lists ready for the Christmas period. You don’t want to leave it too late before you realise your email marketing list is just the same as last year and hasn’t really grown. Maximise the Christmas period by getting your message out to as many people as possible by ensuring you have your lists collated and ready to go by mid-October. Don’t forget to ask us about our unique zMail email platform if you are new to the Electronic Digital Marketing (EDM) game. Sending mail-outs to your clients/customers is not as hard as it sounds and we can help you out using our reliable and robust email marketing platform.
Christmas Gifts and Cards for your clients/customers
Don’t be the one sending out a generic card to your customers/clients because you didn’t think of it until you started receiving them from other clients/customers! Start to think about how you can reward your loyal customers and clients now to ensure you have a beautiful bespoke card and or gift for them. We are more than happy to help with any design/printing/development
Photography, Development, Design & Print
Planning now will give you much more flexibility when working with us, your designers/photographers and developers. It means we can complete work when it is most convenient for you and we are not booked up doing work for other clients. We always pride ourselves in meeting client deadlines and being flexible with working dates and scheduling, however time does get quite tight in the lead-up to the Christmas break.
Printing times can be very critical in the lead-up to Christmas. With the advent (yes, another pun!) of digital printing we can cut print times right down as well as print very small numbers, however in the lead-up to Christmas our printers get very busy and we always ask for clients to at least leave an extra 2-3 business days, taking lead times out to around a week.